December 21, 2008
Kuala Lumpur – Discovery Networks Asia-Pacific and Malaysia’s National Film Development Corporation (FINAS) announced five winners of its Eye on Malaysia initiative. Five filmmakers will each be commissioned to produce a 30-minute documentary showcasing Malaysia’s rich culture, history and heritage told through the eyes of strong, inspiring and engaging characters, places and events. The completed documentaries are scheduled to premiere on Discovery Channel next year, reaching more than 157 million households in Asia-Pacific. Eleven shortlisted participants were invited to pitch their proposals at a special session held in Kuala Lumpur. The judges – comprising producers from Discovery Networks Asia-Pacific, Malaysian production company Reel Networks (engaged to oversee the project), senior representatives from FINAS and affiliate partners Astro – selected the five winning proposals based on originality, quality, creativity and vision, as well as their relevance to the theme. The five winning filmmakers and their winning pitches are: – Jak Othman, with Kungfu Football – Abdul Hamid Abdullah, with Honey Hunters Of Malaysia – Chew Han Tah, with The Joss Stick Maker – Ikhwan Rivai, with Beneath The Winds – Suhaimi Baba, with The Wind Chucker “Eye On Malaysia builds on the success of the First Time Filmmakers initiative in 2007, where one of the films won the ‘Best Documentary Film’ award at the recent Malaysian Film Festival. We believe we have five strong, compelling, relevant films which will appeal to our viewers here and around the region,” said Kevin Dickie, senior vice president and general manager, Southeast Asia, Discovery Networks Asia-Pacific. Eye on Malaysia is the second partnership between Discovery Networks Asia-Pacific, the National Film Development Corporation (FINAS) and the Ministry of Culture, Arts & Heritage of Malaysia, following on the success of First Time Filmmakers (FTFM) Malaysia launched in 2006. Eye on Malaysia is designed to support the local documentary filmmaking industry, provide opportunities for non-fiction filmmakers and showcase Malaysia to the world.